At the Geomedia Conference 2023, held in Tampere between September 20 and September 22, Jan Houška presented a part of his dissertation study focused on the labour of Eastern European nationals in Czech-based game companies. In the paper Hope Labour vs Reality: Experiences of Eastern European Expatriates and Remote Workers in Czech Game Companies, he addressed precarious job conditions of junior workers related to upskilling or personal video game projects in their free time. He also discussed connections between those individual risks and structural issues of local game production, including the lack of programmers, and future hopes and career plans of his Eastern European respondents.
The 5th Geomedia conference encouraged scholars to submit critical investigations that sought to identify hope and hopeful constellations of the current digitized world in various countries. Contributions spanned the fields of media studies, anthropology, media geography, or urban and migration studies, providing an interdisciplinary space to discuss research. The program included keynote talks, film screenings, and presentations thematizing the impacts of digitalization on cultural industries, including television, journalism, or book publishing. The conference was hosted by the Faculty of Information Technology and Communication at Tampere University and organized in collaboration with the Centre for Geomedia Studies at Karlstad University, Sweden. The full program of the 5th Geomedia Conference: “Digital Geographies of Hope” can be found here.